Founders - The visionary force behind APBF
George Twumasi ia graduate of the National Film and Television Institute in Ghana, is a creative visionary who is actively focused on the creation and design of a sound intellectual framework by, which a commercially viable public service news and entertainment African television broadcasting network can be established via www.abnafrica.tv. The network would comprise a bouquet of original African free-to-air television and low-cost pay-tv channels with the goal to enlighten hundreds of millions of African households through socially engineered infotainment and edutainment learning. George is also working towards the launch of www.abicoos.com, an African infotainment and edutainment inspired digital mobile lifestyle platform. Including animated African folklore and third-party, user generated content applications, the goal is to reach 400 million smartphones and mobile tablets on the continent of Africa by 2025 via www.abicoos.com
Emmanuel K. Akyeampong is the President of the African Public Broadcasting Foundation in the US and an Executive Board Director of the African Public Broadcasting Foundation in the UK. He is the Ellen Gurney Professor of History and of African and African American Studies and; Oppenheimer Faculty Director of the Harvard University Center for African Studies. Emmanuel is also a Fellow of the Ghana Academy of Arts and Sciences (FGA), and a Corresponding Fellow of the Royal Historical Society (UK). He is also a co-founder and director of the International Institute for the Advanced Study of Cultures, Institutions and Economic Enterprise (IIAS: www.interias.org.gh) based in Accra, Ghana. He previously served as chair of the Committee on African Studies at Harvard from July 2002 to June 2006.
Mary Goodyear has a long and remarkable professional track record as an analytic market researcher with a strong passion for African cultures. She specialised in international consultancy for many multinational companies and institutions, including the BBC and Diageo and is well-travelled across the West African region and the Caribbean. Mary, who graduated as a psychologist from the University College of London in 1965, brings a wealth of experience to APBF team in the understanding of sub-Saharan African cultures and it’s rich, underlying value systems.
Robert Soteriou has been actively involved in the development of APBF in both the UK and in the USA. Robert is a professionally qualified chartered accountant who worked for Price-Waterhouse, before becoming senior partner of his own firm, which he has run for more than 30 years. Robert is responsible for the practical implementation of the goals of APBF, which its management executive will drive on a day-to-day basis.
Consultants - The people making things happen
Simon Spanswick and his team at the AIB have agreed to provide APBF with interim management services in order to ensure a successful launch. The goal is to establish APBF as a reputable African public service focused digital content publishing and multi-platform broadcast enabling organisation. Simon is a founder director of the AIB. His career spans both public and commercial sectors and for many years he has been closely involved in digital broadcasting.
Phil Molefe is APBF’s Sub-Saharan African Television Industry Relations Adviser. His major role is to assure public sector broadcasters about the value of an efficiently structured public service focusing on digital content publishing and the creation of Regional Editorial Boards, which APBF will spearhead as Africa transitions to digital terrestrial television. Phil has been a journalist for over 30 years, working for several South African publications, including SASPU National, Weekly Mail and The Star. Phil Molefe is the current Chairperson of South Africa’s National Film and Video Foundation (www.nfvf.co.za)
Sal Souza, an Industrial Designer who speaks 9 languages (English – Dutch – Konkani – Vlaams), an expert New Media / User Xperience programmer, and multi-disciplinary project management (fintech, medtech, edutech, VR, AR and ecosystems). Sal is a skilled communicator, able to maintain cultural sensitivity, establish rapport with cross-disciplinary groups and promote team cohesiveness. Sal Souza is the managing partner for ABN’s new catalogue of digital content, multimedia, games, audio visual content and smart tools. He is the founder of Ofamfa®, Cineformat® and AntuBOX®.
Advisory Board - The people shaping the vision
Chris Read, a graduate of University of Newcastle-upon-Tyne, is a TMT focused Conference Manager at Knect 365. He is responsible for bringing together and connecting Africa’s public service broadcasting media’s community, at senior level, together with the right players in technology, telecommunications and media investment, to accelerate the growth of a new digital ecosystem with less risk.
Gillian Rose is APBF’s Content Strategy and International Television Industry Relationships Adviser. She is Senior Vice President, US Sales and Acquisitions, with Sky Vision, part of European media company Sky, based in New York. Prior to this she was Managing Director of PBS Distribution, a company owned jointly by PBS and WGBH Boston.and before that Head of Distribution for WNET, New York’s flagship PBS station, and executive-in-charge of WNET’s lifestyle programming. She is a two-term Chair of the British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) New York and former Co-Chair of the International Emmy Awards Committee. She has a Masters Degree in Communication for Development and is also President/Founder of The Rosemary Pencil Foundation, a non-profit that works in Malawi, Zimbabwe and Zambia.
Before taking up his position at AMI, Eric Chinje served as Senior Advisor at the KRL International LLC, a Washington-based consultancy specializing in emerging markets. Prior to that, he was the Director for Strategic Communications at the Mo Ibrahim Foundation, a position he took up at the start of 2012. Eric also led the Global Media Program at the World Bank Institute (WBI) and, in that capacity, launched the IMAGE (Independent Media for Accountability, Governance and Empowerment) capacity building program and Network to create a crop of development journalists in the Bank’s client countries.